London (change)
Today 20°C / 14°C
Tomorrow 19°C / 14°C


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Camera Corner

Posted: 24/10/2013 at 21:39

Excellent thread David!  I dabbled with photographing fireworks in 2009 and the results can be quite surreal:

 If that one posts properly, I'll post a few more, otherwise I'll edit and retry.


Posted: 24/10/2013 at 21:16

Ally, they flower on 2 year old wood so you need to retain some of that to get flowers which obviously later become berries.  As Dave says, it does respond well to hard pruning so you could cut back hard a third of the stems for the next 3 years which will mean 2/3rds of the shrub will flower next year and one third the year after.  By then the new growth from the first pruning will be ready to flower.  If you keep doing that, 2/3rds of the shrub will always be in flower and you keep the size under effective control.

If you wait until after it has flowered in late Spring, you'll be better able to judge what to remove and what to leave.

Chillis not yet ripe but it's winter?

Posted: 24/10/2013 at 19:42

James, when that happens to me I leave them on the plant and put them on the brightest indoor windowsill I can find.  I've had chillies turning ripe at Christmas - I put a bit of tinsel on the plants and they looked really festive!  Chillies are perennial and as long as the temperature doesn't fall below about 6-8C and they don't get too much water (causes fungal problems) they can keep going indoors almost indefinitely. 

Green water feature

Posted: 24/10/2013 at 19:13

Hi Dizzy, if it receives a lot of sunlight, try growing things around it which overhang and will give it shade.  The green is algae and the more sunlight it gets the worse it becomes.  Also never use tap water to top it up as that contains a lot of nitrates which encourages algae to grow more.  A bunch of barley tied together with string is often reported to help clear it up (this can be bought from GCs these days), but unless you want to keep replacing the barley, shade is likely a better long-term solution.


Posted: 24/10/2013 at 18:55

All organic here Verd.  I have half a bag of miracle grow crystals and half a box of growmore pellets which are about 20 years old - if I ever use them, it will be to sprinkle them in small amounts on the compost heap to help break down cardboard etc, but only if I ever have trouble with my (ahem) 'organic sprinkler', if you know what I mean!  


Posted: 23/10/2013 at 21:46

Some are for the new planters and some for established borders, Verdun.  A few of the more exciting (to me) ones are:

Ceanothus 'Autumnal Blue'

Chaenomeles 'Crimson and Gold'

Corydalis 'Purple Leaf'

Dierama 'Merlin' (the white one was o/s)

Dicenta spectabilis

Myrtus 'Tarentina'

Viburnum 'Eve Price'


Posted: 23/10/2013 at 20:43

Hi Verd, just want to say thanks for the tip about woottens.  I ordered about 20 plants at approx. 1am on Monday and they arrived this morning at 9am - now that's what I call service!  Nice big plants in big pots - much better than I've been used to - and extremely well packed with those biodegradable 'cheesey wotsits' that are now mixed into the compost heap.  

honey fungus

Posted: 21/10/2013 at 23:46

Any dead trunks left in the ground are the ideal home for HF and it's from this base that it sends out rhizomorphs ('bootlaces') which, when they come into contact with living roots, infect other plants.  If you place your woodpile on bricks etc so that the wood isn't in contact with the ground, any HF in the wood will die as the wood dries out.  I wouldn't worry about infecting things via garden tools - it's not like a virus or bacteria and doesn't spread by contact.  The specialist sites say that even the spores of the fruiting bodies have negligable effect in spreading the fungus - it's the rhizomorphs which cause the damage.


Posted: 21/10/2013 at 19:12

Hi all,

Verdun - I had a look at Woottens and got carried away - some great stuff there and many at half price due to the time of year I expect.    Looks like I may have to build another cold frame to overwinter some of them now though!

Must have natives?

Posted: 21/10/2013 at 19:04

Also don't forget Sweet Rocket which also comes in a white form (Hesperis matronalis alba)  as well as the usual pink.  The scent is heavenly.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 253
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 283
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 887
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 676
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 627
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 593
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 464
Last Post: 13/07/2014 at 18:04

Bob's guide to picking soft fruit

Only fto be read by your household's main gardener! 
Replies: 3    Views: 397
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 712
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 632
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 21:44

A week of rain = jungle garden!

It's been too wet to really do anything outside.. 
Replies: 16    Views: 1104
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 722
Last Post: 24/04/2014 at 11:30

Check your delphiniums for caterpillars

Look for distorted and damaged leaves near the tips 
Replies: 10    Views: 1130
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 436
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 764
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05
1 to 15 of 28 threads